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Fall of the Idols : The Séance

The sad Doom of Fall of the Idols is a grievous stream of mud; if you don't get the idea, read the review.

When I gave the 'The Séance' its first spin, I had in mind specific sounds, something between Isole and Solitude Aeturnus; I pictured some good Trad. Doom, lyrical, bluesy with an epic touch for good measure. The first notes disrupted a bit my expectations. It is undoubtedly traditional, the voice is clear, it is lyrical and epic to some extent, but sometimes it's also very heavy and very slow. And dark all along!

The Doom of Fall of the Idols shows certain grandeur in its simplicity. The music flows slowly; it spreads like a stream of cold mud. It is gray silt, thick and limp.

Hakomäki's voice is low, solemn and somewhat lethargic. The throbbing rhythm of the guitars (there are 3 of them!) works like a mantra, a cyclical rhythm that persuades by dint of repetition. Their powerful collective soloing stretches in intimidating resonances. Bass and drums are doing what they are expected to: they set a rather conventional pachydermic rhythmic basis.

The pace can go fatser, and the voice can become more aggressive like on 'At The Birth Of Human Shadow', an almost Stoner track. But Fall of the Idols would likely be quite incapable of writing a groovy Rock 'n Roll song. Their Stoner is somber and tired. Their Doom is asthmatic and blurred. Nothing is clear in the band's music, the melodic fragments are dreary, the effect is hazy, the voice is buried in the mix; nothing stands out. It is a gray mudslide.

'My Home The Gallows' has a poignant sense of tragic like you can find some on 'Watching from a Distance' from Warning.

It would be pointless to go on and comment each track individually. Even if they all have something peculiar to offer, the seven songs actually differ little from each other. I listened to 'The Séance' 5 or 6 times before writing this review and it must be said: I never retain anything from the album. Not a passage, not a vocal line. Is this a bad thing? I think not. The trace of the pleasure you experienced during the listening suffices. The album has to be enjoyed in the moment. The work is honest and even personal.

After all, there is an obvious refusal of facility, of choruses and of any melodic “trick”. The sad Doom of Fall of the Idols is a grievous stream of mud; it does not stop, it flows as if, after our passage, it will slide further and tell new stories. This is in fact one interesting aspect of 'The Séance': not remembering anything preserves the element of surprise. The pleasure of the listening each time is rediscovered.

Reviewer's rating: 7.5/10


Tracklist :
1. Nosophoros
2. The Conqueror Worm
3. At The Birth Of The Human Shadow
4. My Home The Gallows
5. Cathedral Of Doom
6. Cold Air
7. An Age Comes to Its End

Duration : Approx. 58 minutes

Visit the Fall of the Idols bandpage.

Reviewed on 18-02-2009 by Bertrand marchal
No God Only Pain
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